Sunday, August 14, 2011

Who I Used to Be

So it's almost 1 a.m. and I was having a talk with Hubby while drinking Rum and Pepsi and the conversation got too real. I started talking about how things from my past still bother me today, unnecessarily, and how at the age of 30, I should be able to bury things from my past.

I have a habit of questioning and second-guessing myself way too much. I had voice lessons with a vocal coach when I was in college named Clarice, who told me I was always way too hard on myself. If I had trouble hitting a note, I beat myself up over it. When I worked at the Chicago History Museum, I mislabeled an entire box of mugs with the wrong price. When the boss came in and showed me it was incorrect, I was all like "I'm sorry, I didn't mean did I do that? Maybe I'm tired...I'll redo it..." and on and on. It was pathetic. My co-worker Natasha told me "You're way too hard on yourself" and she was right. When I was in Acting 1 at Second City, I watched the other students go up and do their monologues, and had them memorized already, and I was one of three students who didn't have theirs fully memorized and had to look at the paper with it written on it. I was screaming inside of my head, going "Maybe I shouldn't be an actor if I can't even memorize one monologue"...

And fast-forward to today, while I'm drinking (one glass, always), and it's late, and we just finished watching "Salt" with Angelina Jolie and thinking about how I feel like I should've accomplished so much more, considering I've been acting and auditioning since I was 16. (Grammar school productions by Mr. Gleason don't count). At the age of 8, I wrote my first script. It was called "Deadly High", and yes, it had grammatical eras and little things that didn't make sense, and it was 12 pages, but still, I accomplished that at 8! At 6, I had two stories in the school newspaper. I was the youngest ever listed on the school newspaper staff list. I went to meetings! (This was at my first grammar school, Dulles, when I lived in the projects, not Dixon, the grammar school I graduated from, where I was also on the newspaper staff, by the way).

The point in all of this, and for sharing this in a blog is, I'm sick of living in the goddamn past! I have the type of memory where I can put myself back into a certain place easily. I can feel what it felt like, I can remember what it smelled like, I can remember little details like what music I was listening to or what it felt like to be 12...I remember when my brother got into a fight with this guy named Sean on Essex Avenue where we lived, and he had to be taken to the hospital, and a neighbor had to stay with me, and the house smelled like chicken   because we had KFC that night. That's crazy ridiculous! Why can't I just bury that memory??

And I'm not sitting here crying and upset remembering the bad things that happened to me or bad things that I saw. I'm actually quite removed from certain things to a point where I don't bring them up all the time, but sometimes, when I least expect it, a memory creeps up from the depths of my mind and I'm inundated with thoughts and emotions that I just have to shake off. I don't want my kids to know all the struggles that I had as a child, or how I felt completely alone in this world by the age of 10. How my mom couldn't let me continue to practice with the South Shore Drill Team for the Bud Billiken parade because she didn't have bus fare to pick me up after school, so I had to go  home on the school bus at 3:00, like usual. I can't look at my life as "my mom ruined me" or "my life is ruined", because I am only 30.

And as I start a new chapter of my life, trying to put together a webseries and getting back into singing and moving to Los Angeles, I want my past to be just that...the past! One day, maybe I'll tell these stories to my children, so they'll know that mommy came from this to be this...but from now on, I'm not that little girl. That's who I used to be.


  1. You know what! You're gorgeous! And there are still a ton of gorgeous thing you are doing and will do! I can't wait!

  2. Thank you so much Natasha! I appreciate your kind words!